Some of you have seen and heard hints of my next adventure: Six Months in New Hampshire beginning January 6, 2016.
Most of you have asked, “Are you nuts?” New Hampshire? January? Have you ever shoveled snow? (Answer: No.)
For people of faith, Life is a calling. A pilgrimage. New chapters and new challenges. Every major religion expresses the sentiment that the happy person is the one who is content with what life brings: “Thy will be done.” I’ve mostly tried to live that way, and have ended up, without always meaning to, in places such as Malaysia, Mauritania, Brazil, Sweden, Russia, and Greece. Sally and I have friends, because we’ve opened our guest room to strangers, from Latvia, Iran, England, and even North Carolina. Serendipities happen if you let them.
Over the past few years, I have served as a Bridge to an Interim in churches after their pastor has resigned or retired. My dear friends, Ken and Sandy Hale, who have been at Trinity Baptist Church in Hanover, New Hampshire, for over 30 years, are retiring at the end of this year. Sandy has been the student minister at Dartmouth and Ken has pastored the church. They asked if I would step in during this immediate short-term interim and do what I do: preach, teach, challenge, guide, provide hope. I gladly agreed.
Obviously, this will be a very different travel experience than Napa Valley, Scotland, Italy, or Machu Picchu. It could be a very different spiritual experience than anything I’ve encountered in the Southeast. But I know churches, and I know people, and God/Jesus/Spirit and I are on good terms, so here we go.
Anybody want to donate a snow blower? Or come visit me? I will want visitors! The address where I will be staying is 363 Dartmouth College Highway, Lebanon, New Hampshire 03755. Ya’ll come.
I will be just a couple of hours from my daughter Julie and her husband Tom, near Boston, so I expect to see them often. I’ll meet lots of new folks, good souls, and experience life in the winter in New England. Pray with me and Trinity Baptist Church, and Sally, who I am leaving in South Carolina to tutor her students and to take care of our new kitten, Caesar.
What comes next? Spring! Even in New Hampshire.